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Buzz Out Loud
Ep. 1535: HP: WebOS? What WebOS?If you stood by believing all of HP's grand proclamations about standing by WebOS and supporting it to the end, you're finding out the hard way that love really does hurt. A lot. Plus, we discuss whether HP really can make it in the post-PC world, and...
Today it's Friday August 19 2011 my -- Stephen because I'm -- solved. I am Hollywood -- -- a buzz out loud to this podcast of indeterminate length it is episode 15135. -- well. Today in your -- Friday its right day we've been talking about Howell and -- -- over the past month even rough week for you been sick but over the past month. We just haven't -- any news in the temporal we joked about like oh man. Sorry guys it's slow tech weeks I got a subtle attack care what -- smaller all shot Malacca. We -- hit this to be a good straight out of nowhere does it all these tech journalists be like. -- I don't. -- -- -- business and what on earth right so -- Hot on the heels of Google -- which was already pretty earth shattering news in the tech world. Yesterday there were actually the rumors were starting to problem during the show that something was gonna happen with XP but we -- and I did I tried not to be distracted by the Twitter feed. During the show and -- about an hour after we left the studio yesterday. The word came out that HP it will continue. Webos operations. That is they're killing the -- division within -- either killing the touchpad no more. Three type phones -- webos based around I don't know it's gonna happen to the printers did you mean discontinued. In a fake I thought I just wanted -- there it's confused yes it -- thank you for a disc that can do things on here. I have a wicked -- paint over you I'll. They -- they're gonna kill those. And that then. While there's even more news coming -- that let's start with that alone they're gonna take a hundred million dollar loss on all those touch -- they didn't sell. And then right. I mean this news broke my heart in a lot of ways because I don't think -- and had to go out -- Well that's -- loss I think it's hard to say that it was -- that went out like that I mean they went out when HP bought them rate. It's to meet palm was dead once HP acquired them -- have led the sad thing about is that. How long that someone sent us a tweet just to give us that the idea how many days the touch -- Actually at least a lasted from a support -- a -- let's look at historically in Microsoft's kin which was the -- of the final baby project between the danger acquisition of Microsoft. That lasted forty -- alleys on sale rate militant -- will still be on sale but when you're talking about officially supporting device the touch -- How does the can. By one day before the announcement 49 days the touchpad went to market. And they've decided or at least meet the official announcement that there are killing all support moving forward for the hardware and the platform now they did say. And to make things even a little more cloudy they said they're not planning on. Completely. -- -- webos they might look at other options for licensing it or selling it to another company but make no mistake about it. Webos. From what we know that today and HP supporting a really consumer mobile devices. That idea is completely -- -- and we saw HP earlier this year. Roll out this whole array of webos here webos there webos on -- lap -- and in different formats webos and multiple multiple of mobile devices. It's not happening. It's done. -- -- But -- back to talking about have a significant amount of that. The other big news that -- I -- it's almost hard to decide what's bigger news on the one hand it's huge it's huge admission of failure. And it is -- and emission linked to huge. Failure and HP's -- has spent one point two billion dollars to acquire palm to have failed to market it to a failed to innovate with hardware and -- have just like. Drop this product out -- -- obviously two years too late obviously overpriced compared to -- that. Competing products on the market and then team -- just like give up on it after 49 days at that frankly is unconscionable behavior. And if I weren't XP shareholder I would dispute might not amount that you guys in a -- -- -- and then on top of that. They all it also came out in their flurry of stunning announcement per silicon -- dot com. They also announced that they are exploring the sale or spin off of their personal computer business. -- known firsts. You know that this -- slowed in her slaying was. HP sits out. Like two PCs per second -- one of the largest if not the largest PC vendor out there F in other competition is with Dell and there are really stepping away completely from the consumer side. They're -- at how the margins of more profitable if they get into corporate computer systems and -- for support services on that end. Of the industry but now they're they're banning the consumer side. They're going over into a site that has a lot more competition -- companies like Oracle and others and that they're going to try to at least from a business standpoint. Find it where they can make them best margins although they're not a dominant player in either of these -- -- these two worlds now. Yet made it. It is our room it's a remarkable story when literally the world's leading PC makers that -- I think we're gonna get -- It's -- we're living cell that offers -- -- right even though we sell. More than anyone in the world it's it's -- -- which I understand it is low margin they've been under increasing pressure at its peak I mean again. Their own damn -- brightly they have not been able to figure out how to do this right they have built. Everything from low end machines high end machines but they have failed to support them properly the build quality is and like all over the map. And it's true that in a bit. A lot of of -- are reading about how it's similar to what IBM did when they sold their PC division in 2004 and there was definitely a time when. That was unthinkable. It was unthinkable that IBM and they'll PCs and now it's unthinkable that they would. And IBM did actually manage to rebuild itself and focus on those high end computer systems the business software. And it may be that -- The desktop is dead said lots of people typing furiously and desktops. I honestly I think they -- every witnessing today is like hardware at a losing game. Getting to the stuff the powers. And one thing that really shows Howell competitive and how hard. This whole and how quickly the industry moves now is you have people like Apple and Google who have been you know. Machine to the home mobile -- -- very hard and you have companies like this is a bad sign more than anything also. To Microsoft because you have companies that are trying to get into this -- -- There are they really have been behind like they've jumped in a little too late they're trying to play catch up I'm not saying Microsoft Windows Phone 7 is that -- they have a different shaggy but. HP acquired palm we were all excited about it but it's hard to play catch up with what's happening things are moving so fast they're touch -- They came out with that from a device that was not competitive with what was on the market. They probably knew that. But they still said we have to put something out there. And -- -- -- bet that's that's where they would put the money on that's they had their bats but it didn't work out because look at look at how played out they never came -- the product that anyone. Really felt like. This is an indication of why -- she get excited about this plan for moving in the future developers didn't jump on board and then even if the well -- platform survives and lives in any other way. Why should the developer feel like the minute they they -- -- support that when the platform itself is like is there really any life and any reason for me is developer to invest three. Sources to support -- well. It there's two point -- the one I will save from the Microsoft side of things I think actually makes not just had a freaking awesome week. An awesome because -- at Motorola Google Motorola is great news for them. To some extent -- they can start send an imminent Mike's up to smart they are sending brief baskets and I am I right now fruit baskets HD theory right now has been like -- and kind of a dead cow let's BBF -- And then now the only other kind of competitor in this sort of niche -- game it's gone. To some extent but I don't know that that means that webos -- the platform necessarily have to die. -- -- -- -- a lot of people are suggesting that one that Google could -- that HP could fill the -- But Google just left open in terms of and a platform agnostic. Open operating system and that they could open up webos and give it away. Two and then techcrunch suggests actually give -- away only to those people who are willing to help make it better. So people who are willing to put some developer resources behind it. I would say actually. Don't even bother with Writely to open it up and given her way and -- plus I don't make your if if if HP is really getting out of that. Hardware game completely and they promise to do that forever and never like buy a Motorola mobility. They do have a good opportunity to become. The back and cloud services and platform provider that they seem to want to become. I guess that's when asked -- I just honestly. They could do all that I just hope it was -- I don't know I mean I I just I kind of can't get over the travesty. That is the way they handled upon acquisition that just makes me doubt kind of -- NAS that was different leadership may be Leo -- picker has. Got this cloud vision nailed and He says you know what -- we we have figured out that it's opposed PC world. Maybe He got it from an expecting -- and -- this month. At the full then region -- strategy should have reflected that six months ago there's no question though like. Consumers feel so betrayed and people who bought those palm phones. The Palm Pre and upon pixie after HP and over and over and over and over this is what we're gonna roll -- they really did -- mean they put out nothing but. A consistent message about how they were going to get behind -- analysts in a huge way. And then to pull the rug out like that is to. I mean they have -- -- they better stay in enterprise for awhile now to they've certainly lost any. Any lingering consumer goodwill there click this little -- cracks consumer goodwill left crawling around toward cabin upon platform. And webos experience and they they managed even to killed. Yeah without a -- the reputation has been tarnished now from both the consumer side and also the developer's site. Make and that's those are the people like sure they're moving over to the corporate side okay but they still are gaining increased competition in that space. Andy and they're not a dumb but -- -- they need to figure out if these margins at the pursuing an I don't know what the margins are on the corporate side you know. I'm not in that world but they mention how there are a lot obviously a lot higher than what we see in the consumer end. But they really are gonna have to make this up on -- on -- -- and become not only the need to be the leader in order for this to really play out the way that they've envisioned it. And if for this move to be like you know this was successful move for HP we'll have the Seattle plays out in time will tell. A lot -- Leo -- -- -- okay let's see what happens let's see what they end up doing with webos in whatever way shape -- form it lives. I hope the license and I hope the -- it and not just the IP. -- -- it's not that I don't off. And hope that dual license and not to sell -- the IP behind the patents and because I do think that webos as a I mean we've said for a long time that there needed to be contraction. In the Smartphone space there are too many operating systems are too many choices but I think webos as a very consumer friendly option -- -- like palm. Was was one and -- of the original kind of -- user focused company you know like when you think about. I look back at the Palm Pilot I think that every day apples to be offering like tokens of gratitude to public Internet and it gives you look back about originally Palm Pilot. And then you look at an iPhone and your like -- -- -- a little square icons on the screen an interdenominational like upon in the -- and stuff that was going on back in those days it really wasn't that they were at they were hugely at war with each other effort to develop like. Not consumer friendly us -- and -- Really. Yeah it was good but you -- highly webos is it that you I think it does have acute and easy need to maintain -- potential. Believe we've low data we just needed the hardware to act to help -- execution push that forward yeah and the energy. It's it's just like just as you have a really great -- doesn't you know the hold the whole ring hassle look at it not just the rock. So that the other part of that is that their their planning so the other part of HP getting out of the PC business is that they may acquire a company called autonomy. Which would be which is like I think one of those enterprise it companies and let them on the software and software side compete with companies like IBM and Oracle. -- So anyway that date snapshot so far today has -- stocked getting hammered analysts are mad and everybody about any kind of webos devices super angry so. -- being in a -- Iraq for awhile and hope that the storm emblems of her. And not a lot of happy B lot of shock people not a lot of happy people out there in a while. Built well that's -- sad if it's and I mean I get it's painful for companies say. We made a mistake like -- like we said it was different leadership. You know and so in some way the pop pickers having come in and undo what He clearly -- the as the mistakes of the path and of the past and in some ways like you have to applaud. A hugely bolder action -- I mean they're just saying we are going to completely different direction of the company and we are making massive painful cuts. In order to do that both -- You've -- imagine He was thinking that from the start once the whole -- management shift happened in over their once route you know one of the first. Dominos to fall as Rubinstein. Getting moved off of the webos team in kind of working on. Future vision -- -- they they probably already knew at that point that we're pretty much gonna -- this. And so they have bend area and the stars of -- -- distraction I'm shocked that He gave up. On the touchpad so easily but it does make you think that they've given up on -- on time ago that that probably this new leadership public you know at the not a business we wanna be -- -- I would get out of the PC business -- Mac it'll act I just hope that they'll figure out something useful to do with level. It is -- property. It's clearly the -- -- -- will now be -- corporate brand it no longer consumer brand and with the notes. That's with one's -- open an investment mean apartment HP -- of -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- I mean they didn't a lot of analysts are saying it does is Apple winning over HP in -- -- like creeping up behind them so strongly that like. They're just -- it out of the hardware business altogether in have to admit I'm one of them like castle and -- for the MacBook Air. Apps you killed -- -- only. Think about it think about it. Yay for the little guy than did the upstart supporting those smaller platforms that are innovative and moving forward. Well yeah yeah I -- Hate lying its -- that it I knew little. Those are -- -- -- five theory on what at a time. I worry and take a quick break when we come back we're gonna talk about another -- another little guys that are being killed in the -- And they're not mean very fast and eighteenth it's doing its own customers -- always -- get an idea and of course. Computer -- god yes. It is I did we have always been able. Satellite was seen as I guess He didn't -- but Barack bank staff. -- Island could get it back V ready it'll. You invented -- so you're telling -- -- Mayan. From. How many thousands of years ago the Indian emitted zero think that reasoning in the latter and upload their invented that. Enough from caller we we got it got played dead stop like reading is the looks of this -- -- -- -- they're -- to. I get my -- and did.